Thursday, January 28, 2016

A Hookup with the Closeted Egyptian Professor

Bloomington, April 1984

 I heard a lot about Samir before I actually met him. It seemed that everyone on campus had dated him, or was dating him now.

"A professor of political science," Mark the Optometrist said.  "He's published a ton of books!"

"Thick, thick biceps!" Roy the Farmboy said.  "I don't know where he works out, but believe me, it's working!"

"He's famous!" Jimmy, the Bodybuilder on Crutches, said "The State Department calls him for advice!"

"Total active, mostly Greek," Mark's ex-boyfriend Shaun said.  "And ---"  He spread his hands wide to demonstrate Samir's sausage size.

I had to meet this guy!

"Do you mind if I ask him out?" I asked Shaun.

"Sure, go ahead.  But I don't have his number.  You don't call him -- he calls you!"

Have you ever heard of anything so cool?

I dropped by the Political Science Department, looked up his office hours -- and chickened out.

One day Roy the Farmboy and I were walking down 3rd Street, at the edge of the campus, when we passed an older guy, in his 40s, tall, barrel-chested, olive-skinned, with black hair, sharp features, and a short-cropped black beard,  Very formal, very European, in a dark business suit, carrying a leather briefcase, a newspaper under his arm.

I smiled instinctively.  He gave me a cool look of non-recognition and pushed on.

Roy nudged me.  "That was Samir, my ex-boyfriend."

This was the famous Samir?  "Why didn't you say hello?  He acted like he didn't know you."

"He always does that in public. He's a professor."

"Really?  That's a little weird."   In the 1980s all gay professors at Indiana University were closeted: if the administration found out, they would be fired instantly.  So they refused to research gay topics, they invited lady friends to faculty functions, they avoided Bullwinkle's, our local gay bar -- but refusing to acknowledge your gay friends in public was extreme!

The next day Roy called me.  "You were a big hit with Samir."

"You're kidding -- he saw me for like ten seconds."

"No -- he was impressed.  He asked me to set up a meeting at the Fireside in Indianapolis next Friday night."

Indianapolis was quite a long way to drive for a blind date, but I was intrigued.  I asked Viju to come along.

The Fireside was one of those old-fashioned "romantic" restaurants, with bare bricks, dark wood furniture, and very dim lights, so you could barely see who you were talking to.

I know a dark, secluded place, a place where no one knows your face!

Samir was sitting at a table -- in a sweater and jeans, not a business suit, but still very formal -- with a woman!  He introduced her as his friend Emily.


A date an hour away from Indianapolis, with a "beard"!  Talk about closeted!

 We shook hands, and he offered us red wine.  We asked for Cokes instead.

"I'd love to hear about your research," I said.  "It must be fascinating..."

His eyes shot about the room.  "We must not discuss our work here.  Enough to know that we are both at the University."

What was wrong with talking about your job on a date?  "So, where are you from?" Viju asked.

"Originally I am from Egypt, but I lived in London for some time, and I have been in the U.S. for eight years."

"I love the Middle East!" I exclaimed.  "I'm in first year Arabic now.  I had my first sexual experience with a boy from Lebanon."

His eyes shot about the room again.  "Please, we don't discuss sex here.  And at any rate, Egypt is not strictly in the Middle East.  It is the Maghreb."

This date wasn't going well.  "I thought Muslims didn't drink," Viju said gesturing at his wine glass.

"Another misconception.  About 30% of the people in Egypt are Coptic Christians, myself included."

Um...ok, this guy was a little harsh.  "Do you find it hard to reconcile your Coptic faith with being gay?"

Again, eyes shooting about the room. "Please, I am not out."

What did half my friends see in this guy?

We had dinner -- Samir paid -- and excused ourselves to go cruising at the Varsity Lounge.

A few days Samir called.  "It was very pleasant getting to know you the other night.  Would you come over this evening?  We can discuss the Middle East.  I have some books in Arabic that you might like."

After the frosty experience at dinner, I was hesitant, but ok.

When we were alone in his house, Samir was a different person altogether -- smiling, effervescent, loquacious.

He served homemade basboosa (a sort of cornbread with honey).

He showed me some Egyptian movie magazines, and an Arabic translation of Tom Sawyer that he had since he was a boy.

He talked about growing up in the Ain Shams district of Cairo, sneaking into movies with beefcake stars, his first sexual experience with his boarding-school roommate, coming out to his elderly grandmother.

We kissed while listening to a record of whiny Egyptian pop stars.  He had a very hard, very hairy chest and very, very thick biceps.

Then we went into the bedroom, where I went down on his very thick Bratwurst.  He tried to get me to turn over for anal.  When I refused, he said "It doesn't matter.  Just being with a man is what counts, don't you think?"

Afterwards Samir held me tightly in his arms all night, letting go only when I had to get up for the bathroom.

I left in the morning with my head spinning, swooning with infatuation.  This was the guy I had always hoped to meet!

So I dropped by the Political Science Department around noon, hoping to ask him to lunch.

He passed me in the hall with a cool look of non-recognition.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Football Player Who Got Unstuck in Time

New York, November 2000.

You often hear stories about people who get unstuck in time.

Two British ladies touring Versailles slip into the era of Louis XIV.

A man makes a wrong turn in a department store and finds himself in an earlier version of the store from the 1930s.

A man in 19th century costume falls out of the sky.












Here's a photo of  a hipster dude, wearing a t-shirt and modern sunglasses, looking tremendously out of place amid the old people in fedoras witnessing the opening of a bridge in Canada in 1941.

He's probably not unstuck in time, just unstuck. .

There are a lot of unstuck people wandering around on Christopher Street in New York.

It's not exclusively or even predominantly gay: the few gay bars and restaurants are scattered amid weird boutiques, kids' clothing stores, pet supply stores, and the Finnish Lutheran Church.






But it's where Gay Liberation began, a sacred place, a site for pilgrimages for gay people from around the world.

Especially those who have been traumatized by homophobic hatred.

Lost, lonely, confused.  Ghosts. Revenants. Time travelers.

Like the guy who was wearing only white shorts and a black Amish hat, on a cold day in October.

And the Man in Black who just appeared, walking next to me, one day.

And Carey from Tuscaloosa.

I saw him in Christopher Park, staring at the Gay Liberation Monument as if he had seen anything so strange: in his 20s, medium height, solidly built, a little nerdy, with a square face, dirty blond hair, and thick eyebrows.  He was wearing brown slacks, a red sweatshirt with giant letter A on it, and a brown fedora, and carrying an old-fashioned knapsack rather than a backpack.

First rule of living in big cities: don't stop to talk to anyone you don't know.  They will con you, or rob you, or both.

But I am particularly attracted to "lost souls," so I stopped.  "Pretty great, isn't it?"

"Murder!"  he said with a smile.  " I knew the Big Apple was up-to-date, but so out in the open and all!  You sure couldn't get away with that jazz back home."  He turned to me and held out his hand.  "Hiya, kid.  I'm Carey, Tuscaloosa U. of A.  Go Crimson Tide!"

Later I figured out that he meant the University of Alabama football team. "Boomer.  You're a long way from home."

"Don't I know it!  We're on field trip to see the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State.  I sort of got side tracked on the Staten Island Ferry.  Say, you wouldn't know any eateries around here, would ya, Jackson?  I could eat a horse, hooves and all!"

I took him to a Thai place, where he was amazed by both the food and the prices.

Carey said he had always been attracted to guys, but he wasn't out to anybody, and he would probably get married, because "that's the way we do things in the South."  He had no idea that there were books on gay topics or gay characters on tv: "we don't look at a lot of television in the South."

I took him back to my apartment -- yes, my roommate was that way, too --  and showed him my tv set and bookcase full of books on gay history and culture.

"What's Stonewall?" he asked, pulling a book off the shelf. "Stonewall Jackson?  Was he that way?"

"It's the bar across from Christopher Park, where Gay Liberation began."

He stared at me, blank, confused.

"The Stonewall Riots?  Gay Pride Day?"

He put the book down and wrapped his arms around me. "I'm not much for history --  I like the present.  Two guys together, right here, right now, that's all that counts, dig?"

Nothing spectacular about the hookup.  Very nice physique, smelled of cologne.  Uncut, average sized, complained about having to use a condom.

Then he got dressed and said "Thanks, Boomer.  It's been swell, but I'd better be getting back."  And he vanished into the night, leaving me thinking.


His slang, his costume, his lack of familiarity with tv or the basics of gay history -- was Carey unstuck in time?  Or just a clueless Southern boy?

I looked up the roster of the Alabama Crimson Tide football team in the 1930s -- yes, those records are available -- and found a William Cary Cox from Bainbridge, Georgia, who played center from 1937 to 1939.   He looked kind of like my Carey.

After college, he served in World War II, and then ran an auto dealership in Alexandria City, Alabama.  He died in 1991, survived by his wife and two children.

A life lived fully, excessively in the Straight World.

Unless he took a  "jump to the left" one day in 1939 and ended up in the West Village.

See also: My Dad's Old Navy Buddy, or His Grandson?; Cruised by a Man in Black

Which Story Actually Happened?

These stories are all based on real events, but I always take some artistic license, combine two events into one, make up conversations, change details.

Some changes are to protect people's identities. About 3/4ths of the names are made up.

Sometimes I can't remember everything.  If I don't know the exact name of the restaurant I went to in Barcelona 20 years ago, I'll look one up.

Sometimes trying to include all the people and events would be too confusing.

And of course I have to make some changes, to turn an incident into an interesting story.

Can you figure out which story actually happened the way I wrote it, and which was modified?




Childhood

A, I visit my Indian cousins, and play a game where I get to tie the older one up and fondle his penis?

B. Two older boys teach me about oral sex in the church parking lot?

Answer.  B.  When I visited my cousin, I pulled down his pants, but his brothers intervened and "rescued" him before I got to do anything else.

High School

A. In Switzerland for a Nazarene conference, my friend and I sneak into town, and dance with a Swedish leatherboy at a bar?

B. A week after figuring "it" out, Dino the Golden Boy invites me to a 4th of July party involving naked guys sliding into each other?

Answer: B.  We did go to the bar in Switzerland, but I met the Swedish leatherboy in another bar in London years later,



College

A. I trick the boss from hell into revealing his Trouser Snake, running out from the bathroom into the store, still fully aroused?

B. My professor at a small religious college in the Midwest invites his advanced students to a handcuff party?

Answer: B. My boss did come running out of the bathroom, but he wasn't aroused.










West Hollywood

A. A Ginger Boy for Christmas.  Fred and I go to JRs in Rock Island and pick up a Ginger Boy, who ignores me, and a few years later Dick and I go to the same bar and pick up the same Ginger Boy, who gets ignored by Dick?

B. Gershom, the Orthodox Jewish guy who had never been with a Gentile before, and asked to practice on me, so we did it in the kitchen, with our boyfriends waiting out in the living room?

Answer: A. Gershom and I did practice before his big date, but in private.




San Francisco

A. I dated Kevin the Vampire, who had special powers, like you couldn't see him unless you wanted him to?

B. The Amazing Invisible Boy, who came back to my apartment, couldn't explain the brown stain on his shirt, didn't understand contemporary references, and vanished without going through the door?

Answer: B.  Kevin was not nearly as vampire-like as the story suggests.

New York

A. I meet famous composer Andrew Lloyd Webber at a party, and he gives me a ride home in his limo, and we stop for tacos?

B. Visiting Rock Island for the holidays, my 14-year old nephew asks me "how gay guys have sex," and Yuri and I take him to the park and demonstrate gay kissing?

Answer: B.  I talked to Andrew Lloyd Webber, but didn't get a ride home with him.  That was Tom Wopat.




Florida

A. Janik the Frisian Bodybuilder, who I met in the Horseman's Club in Amsterdam, invited me back to his small town in Friesland?

B. When I was in Arizona, cruising in the Navajo Nation, I finally met a Native America guy, except he turned out to be white?

Answer: A.  I didn't meet anyone in the Navajo Nation.  The jogger pickup actually happened in Albuquerque.

Ohio

A. The Huber Heights Horror, who I drove 20 miles at 2:00 am to date, only to find out that he completely misrepresented himself -- older, fatter, and smaller than his profile, and only into a hookup, not a date?

B. I go on a spiritual retreat, get a Catholic priest as a roommate, and see him tenting as he becomes aroused in his sleep?

Answer: B.. #A was actually two incidents combined.  The Huber Heights guy didn't misrepresent himself, except that he wanted a hookup instead of a date.  It was another guy who said he was 30, muscular, with a Mortadella beneath the belt.




Upstate

A. I take Troy to his first glory hole, and promise that I'll be the guy on the other side, so he can practice, but before I get a chance, he hooks up with a French Canadian farmer?

B. Lester, the Shy Boy at the Bathhouse, whose friends told him that he couldn't leave until he had been with five guys, or one guy five times?

Answer: B.. Troy didn't really hook up with anyone in his video booth












Plains

A,  At a comic book store, I pick up a boy with cerebral palsy who has Daddy issues and wants to rip my clothes off?

B. I go to a heterosexual dinner party, and hook up with my host's college-age son while everyone else is having dessert and coffee in the next room?

Answer: B, of course.  In #A,  I didn't pick up the boy with cerebral palsy at a comic book store, with his father standing right there.  It was at a bar.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

The Zoroastrian Who Did It Six Times a Day

Delhi, India, June 1984

During the summer of 1984, just after we got our M.A. degrees in English, my friend Viju invited me to visit his family in India for two weeks.

Except for trips to Agra and Varanasi, we spent most of our time in Delhi, hanging out with his parents, sister Aruna, and old university friends, We went to a bodybuilding competition, a lot of shopping malls, and since I was interested in religion, a lot of temples and mosques.

There were no gay bars, bathhouses, community centers, or gay organizations  in India, but there was a lot of public sex in Jahanpanah City Forest.  You saw a guy you liked, nodded, and followed him into the bushes.

Viju said that it was perfectly safe: although "sodomy" was technically illegal,  the police didn't believe that it existed in India, so they didn't patrol.

I was a little hesitant, but when a tall, slim, very dark skinned guy in his 30s smiled at me, Viju whispered "Go for it!"  I followed him into a little copse, where he was already unzipped and aroused, his dark Bratwurst with a thick mushroom head a striking contrast to his white pants.  As I went down on him, I felt his hard muscular chest under his shirt, then moved around and grabbed his butt.  He groaned.

A moment later, he finished with a shudder, then pulled me to my feet and drew me into a kiss.  "My name is Arshad.  You are an American, yes?"

"Right.  I'm here visiting my friend."

"I guessed that.  I love American boys -- you have an energy, an excitement."  I felt him becoming aroused again.  "Would you have dinner with me tonight?"

"I'll have to ask if Viju has plans for us..."

"Invite him along, too.  The Host at 8:00?  But first, if you're not too tired..."

He pushed me to my knees again.  This time took a little longer, but not much.  Three or four minutes, and he groaned and shuddered and thrust deeply into my throat.

The Host turned out to be a very bright, airy, and expensive restaurant on Connaught Circus, about a half hour by car from Viju's house.

Arshad arrived with a date for Viju: Noel, slim, redheaded, with a British accent.  They were coworkers at an engineering firm.

"But originally I am from Ahmedabad, in Gujarat," Arshad told us.  "A Parsi.  Have you heard of us?" .

Parsis -- Zoroastrians!  The ancient monotheistic religion that competed with Christianity in the first and second centuries.  Ahura Mazda and Ahriman, light and darkness, order and chaos.   The Avestas.  Zarathustra.  Fire temples!

"You are very intelligent as well as handsome," Arshad said, cutting me off.

"Boomer is very interested  in religion," Viju said.  "Me, not much.  I look toward the future, not the past."  He grabbed Noel's hand -- or crotch, I couldn't tell -- under the table.

"Then you must let me take you on a tour of the spiritual sites of Delhi.  I will take tomorrow off from work.  There are temples for Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Baha'is..."

"Christian churches, mosques..."  Noel added.

"A Zoroastrian fire temple?" I asked eagerly.

"Of course, of course," Arshad said, looking down at the menu.  "We will tour that as well."

 We finished the evening at Arshad's apartment.  Noel and Viju took the guest room, and Arshad brought me into the master bedroom, where I went down on him four more times, with kissing in between.

Six times in one day!  My jaw ached, and my throat hurt from the constant banging.   Yet Arshad never touched me beneath the belt.

Oh, well, at least tomorrow I would see a Zoroastrian fire temple.

After breakfast -- and two more throat-bangings  -- Noel and Viju left, and Arshad drove me out to Ahinsa Sthal, about a half-hour drive south of his apartment.  Sacred to Jainism, with a 13-foot statue of Mahavira.

That was impressive.

Then another half-hour drive east to the Lotus Temple, sacred to the Baha'i religion.

Ok, but what about the Fire Temple?

Back into town, 30 minutes north to the Jama Masjid, a huge mosque.

I already saw it, but ok, I didn't mind seeing it again.

Back to Arshan's apartment for lunch and another bedroom session.  Twice in ten minutes!

Ok, my jaw is sore.  What about the Fire Temple?

Another 30 minutes around Connaught Circus to the Lakshi Narayan Mandir, a Hindu temple that I had already visited.

It was late afternoon.  We had been reverent all day.  I was getting "church fatigue."  Not to mention "jaw fatigue."  Who would ever have thought that you could get tired of oral sex?

"Next the Sacred Heart Cathedral" Arshad said. "It's only a few blocks from here."

Interesting, but I had seen Catholic churches before.

"Could we go to the Fire Temple now?  It's getting late."

He looked away.  "Sure, sure, I suppose.  It's only a few blocks away."

We got into his car and drove east on Nehru Boulevard.  Just past a gigantic hospital complex, we turned right on Bahadur Shah Road.

"The Parsi Anjuman is there on the left," Arshad said as we zipped by.

It was a small, square building with a pillared portico and some vaguely Babylonian fretwork.

"Hey, aren't we going to stop?"

"Oh, there's nothing much to see inside.  And I'm getting hungry.  Shall we have dinner?"

"Hey, what gives?  We spend all day touring the sacred sites of Jains, Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Bahai's, and Christians, but when it comes to your own religion, you zoom past at 80 miles an hour."

"Sorry.  But...it's just that..."  He stroked my knee.  "One who is unclean may not enter the temple."

"Non-believers?  That's ok, I don't mind not going in."

"Not you -- me.  I'm unclean. I'm the one who has spilled his seed.  My religion teaches that those who do such things are like dogs, filthy beasts."

I looked at Arshad.  Did he actually believe that nonsense, think of himself as a filthy beast?  It was hard to tell.  "Well...my childhood religion, the Nazarenes, have some crazy beliefs, too.  I suppose I wouldn't want to give you a tour of the their church either."

But still, the "filthy beast" statement made me feel uncomfortable.  After dinner, I refused another bedroom session, and asked Arshad drop me off at Viju's house.  We exchanged addresses, but didn't write.

Modern Zoroastrians seem to be more accepting of gay people, at least in the U.S.  I saw an article on a gay Christian-Zoroastrian wedding held at the chapel of Northwestern University.

See also: 20 Preacher Penises; a Bodybuilding Contest in India

Monday, January 25, 2016

16 Indiana University Boyfriends, Dates, Tricks, and Bar Hookups

I figured "it" out during the summer after my senior year in high school, and spent the next four years at a small Lutheran college.  I had a couple of boyfriends, went on a few dates, even marched in a Gay Rights March, but I had no idea that there was a gay community out there.  Everything was underground, clandestine, unspoken.

Not until I started grad school at Indiana University did I really "come out," start going to gay venues and meeting gay people.  And "tricking," going home with guys I just met.

In West Hollywood in 1985, "tricking" was rare and frowned upon, but not in Bloomington in 1982. We hadn't heard of AIDS, we were young and naive, and after 20 years of being told that same-sex desire does not exist, just being able to flirt with guys, to stare, compliment their physiques, touch their shoulders or chests was a new, glorious freedom.

It wasn't about sex.  It was about belonging, friendship, community, about overcoming the heteronormative lie, about acknowledging that same-sex desire is real and valid.

And I met a lot of very interesting guys:


Fall 1982

1.Shaun, the first gay person I met in Bloomington, who also happened to be the boyfriend of Mark, the optometry student from down the hall.  Not a problem: Mark was happy with "sharing."

2. Roy the Farmboy from southern Indiana, who worked with me in the Eigenmann Hall Snack Bar.  We drove down to Kentucky for my first-ever service at the gay Metropolitan Community Church.  Then we went out with Preacher and the Security Guard.  I only managed to spend the night with the Preacher.










Spring 1983

3, My friend Viju talked me into going to gay bars.  First we drove up to Indianapolis, where I met a blond violinist from Finland, visiting for a concert.  They make them big in Finland.

4. Soon we started going to Bloomington's own gay bar, Bullwinkle's.  On the first night I cruised solo, I accidentally hooked up with Creepy Old Guy with a grand piano who kept calling me "beautiful boy."









5.  Meanwhile I got invited to my straight friend's "circle jerk," and ended up seeing Six Naked College Guys.  Plus I landed a date with Asher, a cute freshman who refused to pull it out.

6. Back in Indianapolis, I hooked up with a Deputy Attorney General of the State of Indiana, whose large dogs kept trying to horn in on our evening together.











7. And a Mormon missionary who tried to convert me, while we were lying in bed, and left some tracts and a Book of Mormon on my nightstand.  I still have it.

8. And a Nigerian Daddy with a tattooed penis, who summoned Yoruba Orishas.  He convinced me that the point of cruising is not to search for archetypal male beauty, but to get to know unique guys in their unique locations.













Summer 1983

9. That summer my friend Joseph, an undergraduate who belonged to the Gay Student Union, took me to help clean out his great-aunt's house...and, you know, other stuff.  Unfortunately, I got spooked by the ghost of Great-Aunt Rose, curtailing the erotic activity.  But we spent the night together in his parents' house in Indianapolis.

10. Later Viju came to visit me in Rock Island, and we drove into Chicago's gay neighborhood, including my first bathhouse, Man's Country.  We hooked up with a guy who took us to a country-western bar called Yosemite's.


Fall 1983

11. I dated Jimmy the Bodybuilder on Crutches all through the fall, until he dumped me for one of students in the class I was a teaching assistant for.

12. But Viju and I still had time to pick up a bisexual bodybuilder from Thailand (left) whose girlfriend showed up the next day.  We all went out for breakfast. She didn't mind that he was bisexual, and sometimes "shared" his bar pickups, male and female.








Spring 1984

13. After Jimmy and I broke up, I dated a professor of political science from Egypt, in his 40s, hairy chest, beard, very big beneath the belt, who was making the rounds of the gay students on campus.  Unfortunately, he kept trying to talk me into anal.

14. Meanwhile, Viju and I tried to find out if Professor Singer. who taught Restoration and Augustan Literature, was gay.  Viju tried a "sexual confusion" gambit, while I just took my clothes off at the gym.











15. My last Bullwinkle's pickup was the most interesting: a townie who turned out to be my second cousin, grandson of my Grandma Davis's younger brother Harry.  I showed him the photographs of the gay couple that I got from Grandma Davis's trunk when she died.  He seemed more interested in my Bratwurst.















Summer 1984

16. During the summer after we got our M.A. degrees, Viju invited me to visit him in India, where I got a date with Arshad, dark, muscular, uncut, Zoroastrian.







Sunday, January 24, 2016

Yuri Lands the Coffee Drinker I Was Cruising

Wilton Manors, February 8th, 2002

The Filling Station was my favorite bar in Wilton Manors: three blocks from my house, good burgers and fries, a good mix of bears, regular guys, twinks, and drag queens.  I usually got there at 9:00 pm, just as it was starting to get crowded, but that Friday night in February, I was meeting a date there at 7:00.  

The bar was practically deserted: a bartender, a leatherman eating a hamburger, two giggling twinks, the elegantly dressed old guy who is a fixture at every bar.  I sat down at the bar and ordered a Coke.

Then I saw the Coffee Drinker walking across the dance floor from the dj booth.

He was in his 30s, short, pale, solid with South Florida muscle, strikingly handsome, with a baby face and heavy-lidded sleepy eyes, wearing a white t-shirt that showed his nipples, a beige jacket, and slacks.  And he was holding a large white coffee cup.

There's something indescribably sexy about a guy drinking coffee in a bar.  How did he even know that they served coffee?  Or was it just for him, from a pot brewing in the back room?   He must have access to secret special places.  Maybe he lived in the bar, and was just climbing out of bed. Maybe he was the manager.

As I watched, Coffee Drinker made a slow, careful circuit of the entire bar, occasionally taking a sip from his cup with both hands, as if he was cold. Was he ever going to stop?

Two circuits.  Then my date arrived.  I pointed out the Coffee Drinker.  We speculated on who would be drinking coffee in a bar, and then went on to dinner.

February 13th.

I dropped in the bar on Saturday, but the Coffee Drinker wasn't there.  The next popular night was Wednesday, bear night.  I arrived at 7:00, and sure enough, the Coffee Drinker was making a long, slow circuit of the bar, never stopping, never interacting with anyone, occasionally sipping from his cup.

Two circuits.  Three.  Was he ever going to stop so I could draw him into a conversation?

I headed for the bathroom, timing myself to meet him, and gave him a smile and nod of recognition.  He glared.

What was with this guy?







February 15th.

Friday night at 7:00 pm.  The Coffee Drinker was making his usual slow circuit. 

He had seen me twice, so certainly we were "bar friends" who could say hello and even hug without cruising.  I began a circuit that intersected with him, and as we passed, gave him a friendly shoulder grab without making eye contact, a sort of bar "hello."

Coffee Drinker shrugged me off with a vicious glare.

What was with this guy?  


February 20th.

I guessed that the Coffee Drinker came to the Filling Station on Wednesday and Friday nights.  Sure enough, on Friday the 20th, 7:00 pm, he was there, making his usual circuit.  

I ordered coffee at the bar -- yes, they served it, but the bartender wasn't happy, since he had to walk all the way out to the kitchen to fetch it.  

Coffee in hand, I walked in the same direction as Coffee Drinker, caught up with him, and said "Look, we match."

He glared at me.

"Hi, my name is Boomer.  Slow night tonight."

"I'm not interested in a relationship."

"Relationship?  But I just..."

He turned and walked quickly in the opposite direction.


February 27th

Ok, I should have just given up, but he was cute AND a mystery.  Tonight I brought my ex-boyfriend Matt the Security Guard, so the Coffee Drinker would think we were on a date, and not think I was cruising him.

We got our coffees and stood by the DJ booth, arms around each other, waiting for the Coffee Drinker to make his circuit past us.

When he saw us, he turned the other way, and began making U-shaped circuits that avoided the DJ booth.

Enough was enough!

I stopped going to the Filling Station early, and forgot about the Coffee Drinker.



April 24th, 2002

A Wednesday night, two months later.  My housemate Yuri called about 7:30.

"Guess what -- I went to your bar, the Filling Station, and I met someone.  Will you be home?"

In West Hollywood and New York, inviting someone you just met into your bed was rare and frowned upon -- you waited four or five days, and then went out on a date.  In Florida it was still uncommon, but ok, as long as you did something social first -- making it into an instant date -- and invited a friend along, or at least gave a friend his contact information.  Being alone with a stranger was a good way to get robbed or assaulted.  

"Sure.  Do I get to watch or share?"



"Watch, sure.  Maybe share -- I will ask.  Did you eat dinner?  We can get Chinese food."

"I already ate, but I wouldn't say no to some kung pao chicken."

About half an hour later, Yuri came in, carrying a bag from the Lotus Kitchen -- followed by the Coffee Drinker.  Real name: Sidney.

No big mystery -- he drank coffee because he was a recovering alcoholic.  And he gave me Attitude because he thought I wanted a hookup.     

But he was fine with sharing.

Hairy chest, average beneath-the-belt gifts, uncut, mostly an anal top, although I got to go down on him a little.  He wasn't much of a cuddler afterwards, and he wouldn't kiss.  And a little weird.  Yuri didn't see him again.

See also: Matt the Security Guard.